Published in the Pentecostal Evangel, November 12, 1927.
Bible Reading Acts 19:1-20.
This is a wonderful reading; it has many things in it which indicate to us that there was something more marvelous about it than human power, and when I think about Pentecost I am astonished from day to day because of its mightiness, of its wonderfulness and how the glory overshadows it. I think sometimes about these things and they make me feel we have only just touched it. Truly it is so, but we must thank God that we have touched it. We must not give in because we have only touched. Whatever God has done in the past, His name is still the same. When hearts are burdened and they come face to face with the need of the day, they look into God’s Word and it brings in a propeller of power or an anointing that makes you know He has truly visited. It was a wonderful day when Jesus left the glory. I can imagine all the angels and God the Father and all heaven so wonderfully stirred that day when the angels were sent to tell that wonderful story: “Peace on earth and good will to men.” It was a glorious day when they beheld the Babe for the first time and God was looking on. What happened after that day and until He was 30 years old I suppose it would take a big book to put it all in. It was a working up to a great climax.
I know that Pentecost in my life is a working up to a climax; it is not all done in a day. There are many waters and all kinds of times until we get to the real summit of everything. The power of God is here to prevail. God is with us. The mother of Jesus hid a lot of things in her heart. The time came when it was made manifest at Jordan that Jesus was the Son of God. Oh, how beautifully it was made known! It had to be made known first to one that was full of the vision of God. The vision comes to those who are full. Did it ever strike you we cannot be too full for a vision, we cannot have too much of God? The more of God, then the visions begin. When God has you in His own plan, what a change, how things operate. You wonder, you see things in a new light. And how God is being glorified as you yield from day to day, and the Spirit seems to lay hold of you and bring you on. Yes, it is pressing on, and then He gives us touches of His wonderful power, manifestations of the glory of these things and indications of greater things to follow, and these days which we are living in now speak of better days. How wonderful!
Where should we have been today if we had stopped short, if we had not fulfilled the vision which God gave us? I am thinking about that time when Christ sent the Spirit; and Paul did not know much about that; his heart was stirred, his eyes were dim, he was going to put the whole thing to an end in a short time, and Jesus was looking on. We can scarcely understand the whole process only as God seems to show us, when He gets us into His plan and works with us little by little. We are all amazed that we are amongst the “tongues people;” it is altogether out of order according to the natural. Some of us would have never been in this Pentecostal movement had we not been drawn, but God has a wonderful way of drawing us. Paul never intended to be among the disciples, Paul never intended to have anything to do with this Man called Jesus, but God was working, God has been working with us and has brought us to this place. It is marvelous! Oh! the vision of God, the wonderful manifestation which God has for Israel.
I have one purpose in my heart, and it is surely God’s plan for me, that I want you to see that Jesus Christ is the greatest manifestation in all the world, and His power is unequaled, but there is only one way to minister it. I want you to notice that these people, after they had seen Paul working wonders by this power, began on a natural line. I see it is necessary for me if I want to do anything for God, I must get the knowledge of God, I must get the vision of God, I cannot work on my own. It must be a divine revelation of the Son of God. It must be that. I can see as clearly as anything that Paul in his mad pursuit had to be stopped in the way, and after he was stopped in the way and had the vision from heaven and that light from heaven, instantly he realized that he had been working the wrong way. And as soon as ever the power of the Ho]y Ghost fell upon him, he began in the way in which God wanted him to go. And it was wonderful how he had to suffer to come into the way, It is broken spirits, it is tried lives and it is being driven into a corner as if some strange thing had happened; that is surely the way to get to know the way of God.
Paul had not any power to use the name of Jesus as he did use it; only as he had to go through the privations and the difficulties, and even when all things seemed as though shipwrecked, God stood by him and made him know that there was something behind all the time that was with him, and able to carry him through, and bring out that for which his heart was all the time longing. Unconsciously he seemed to be so filled with the Holy Ghost that all that was needed was just the bringing of the aprons and the handkerchiefs and sending them forth. I can imagine these people looking on and seeing him and saying, “But it is all in the name, don’t you notice that when he sends the handkerchiefs and the aprons he says, ‘In the name of the Lord Jesus I command that evil to come out.’?”
These people had been looking round and watching, and they thought, “It is only the name, that is all that is needed,” and so these men said, “We will do the same.” These vagabond Jews, those seven sons of Sceva, were determined to make this thing answer, and they came to the place where that man had been for years possessed with an evil power, and as they entered in they said, “We adjure thee in the name of Jesus to come out.” The demons said, “Jesus we know, and Paul we know, but who are ye?” and this evil power leaped upon them and tore their things off their backs, and they went out naked and wounded. It was the name, only they did not understand it. Oh, that God should help us to understand the name! It is the name, oh! it is still the name, but you must understand there is the ministry of the name, there is something in the name that makes the whole world charmed. It is the Holy Spirit back of the ministry, it is the knowledge of Him, it is the ministry of the knowledge of Him, and I can understand it is only that.
I want to speak about the ministry of the knowledge; it is important. God help us to see. I am satisfied with two things; one is this, I am satisfied it is the knowledge of the Blood of Jesus Christ today, and the knowledge of His perfect holiness. I am perfectly cleansed from an sin and made holy in the knowledge of His holiness. I am satisfied today that as I know Him, and the knowledge of His power, and the Christ that is manifested, and the power that worketh in me to minister as I am ministering only in the knowledge of it, it is effective, so that it brings out the very thing which the word of God says it will do, in the ministry of which, as I know it, it has power over an evil powers by its effectual working in that way. I minister today in the power of the knowledge of the ministry of it, and beyond that there is a certain sense that I overcome the world according to my faith in Him, and I am more than conqueror over everything just in the knowledge that I have of Him being over everything, as crowned by the Father to bring everything into subjection.
Shouting won’t do it, but there is a lubrication about it which is gloriously felt within and brings it into perfect harmony with the will of God, but it is not in the shout, and yet we cannot help but shout, but it is in the ministry of the knowledge that He is Lord over all demons, all powers of wickedness.
[At this point in the service someone (possibly Wigglesworth) spoke in prophetic tongues. The interpretation was: "The Holy One which anointed Jesus is so abiding by the Spirit in the one that is clothed upon to use the Name till the glory is manifested and the demons flee, they cannot stand the glory of the manifestation of the Spirit which is manifest."]
So I am realizing that Paul went about clothed in the Spirit, This was wonderful. His body was full of virtue? No!! He sent forth handkerchiefs from his body and aprons from his body, and when they touched the needy they were healed and demons were cast out. Virtue in his body? No! Virtue in Jesus, by the ministry of faith in the name of Jesus through the power of the unction of the Holy Ghost in Paul.
[Another message in tongues: "The liberty of the Spirit bringeth the office."]
It is an office, it is a position, it is a place of rest, of faith. Sometimes the demon powers are dealt with very differently, not all the same way: but the ministry of the Spirit by which it is ministered by the power of the word “Jesus” never fails to accomplish the purpose for which the one in charge has wisdom or discernment to see, because along with the Spirit of ministry there comes the revelation of the need of the needy one that is bound.
So differently the Spirit ministers the name of Jesus. I see it continually happening. I see those things answer and all the time the Lord is building up a structure of His own power by a living faith in the knowledge of the sovereignty of the name of Jesus. If I turn to John’s Gospel I get the whole thing practically in a nutshell. To know Thee, O God, and Jesus Christ whom Thou hast sent, is eternal life. We must have the knowledge and power of God and the knowledge of Jesus Christ, the embodiment of God, to be clothed upon with God, God in human flesh. I see there are those who have come into line, they are possessed with the blessed Christ, and the power of the Baptism which is the revelation of the Christ of God within, and it is so evidently in the person who is baptized and the Christ is so plainly abiding that the moment he is confronted with evil, instantly he is sensitive of the position of this confronting, and he is able to deal accordingly.
The difference between the sons of Sceva and Paul is this: They said “It is only using the word.” How many people only use the word, how many times people are defeated because they think it is just the word, how many people have been brokenhearted because it did not answer when they used the word? If I read into my text this afternoon this: “He that believeth shan speak in tongues, he that believeth shall cast out devils, he that believeth shall lay hands on the sick,” if I read this into my text, on the surface of it it seems exactly easy, but you must understand this, there are volumes to be applied to the word believe. To believe is to believe in the need of the majesty of the glory of the power, which is all power, which brings all other powers into subjection.
And what is belief? Sum it up in a few sentences. To believe is to have the knowledge of Him in whom you believe; it is not to believe in the word Jesus, but to believe in the nature, to believe in the vision, for all power is given unto Him, and greater is He that is within thee in the revelation of faith than he that is in the world, and so I say to you, do not be discouraged if every demon has not gone out. The very moment you have gone, do not think there is an end of it. What we have to do is to see this, that if it had only been using the name those evil powers would have gone out in that name by the sons of Sceva. It is not that. It is the virtue of the power of the Holy Ghost, with the revelation of the Deity of our Christ of glory, where all power is given unto Him, and in the knowledge of Christ, in the faith of what He is, demons must surrender, demons must go out, and I say it reverently, these bodies of ours are so constructed by God that we may be filled with that divine revelation of the Son of God till it is manifest to the devils you go to and they have to go. The Master is in, they see the Master. Jesus I know, and Paul I know. The ministry of the Master! How we need to get to know Him till within us we are fun of the manifestation of the King over all demons.
Brothers and sisters, my heart is full. The depths of my yearnings are for the Pentecostal people. My cry is that we will not miss the opportunity of the Baptism of the Holy Ghost, that Christ may be manifested in the human till every power of evil will be subject to the Christ which is manifested in you, The devils know. Two important things are before me: To master the situation of myself. You are not going to meet devils if you cannot master yourself, because you soon find the devil bigger than yourself, and it is only when you are subdued that Christ is enthroned and the embodiment of the Spirit is so gloriously covering the human life that Jesus is glorified to the full. So first it is the losing of ourself and then it is the incoming of Another; it is the glorifying of Him which is to fulfill all things and when He gets lives He can do it. When He gets lives that will so yield themselves to God, God will be delighted to allow the Christ to be so manifested in you, that it will be no difficulty for the devil to know who you are.
I am satisfied that Pentecost is to reestablish God in human flesh. Do I need to say it again? The power of the Holy Ghost has to come to be enthroned in the human life so it does not matter what state we are in. Christ is manifested in the place where devils are, the place where religious devils are, the place where a false religion and unbelief is, the place where a formal religion has taken the place of holiness and righteousness. You have need to have holiness, the righteousness and Spirit of the Master, so that in every walk of life everything that is not like our Lord Jesus will have to depart and that is what is needed today. I ask you in the Holy Ghost to seek the place where He is in power. “Jesus I know, Paul I know but who are ye?” May God stamp it upon us for the devil is not afraid of you. May the Holy Ghost make us today terrors of evil doers, for the Holy Ghost came into us to judge the world of sin, of unbelief, of righteousness, and that is the purpose of the Holy Ghost. The devils will know us, and Jesus will know us.